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Viewpoint With Eliot Spitzer

News/Business. (2012) New. (CC) (Stereo)

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01:00:00

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PG

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San Francisco, CA, USA

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Virtual Ch. 107 (CURNT)

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mpeg2video

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ac3

PIXEL WIDTH
528

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480

TOPIC FREQUENCY

Fbi 18, Us 12, Karl Rove 5, Grover Norquist 5, Boehner 5, Vo 4, Washington 3, New York 3, Sandy 3, John Boehner 3, Eliot 3, Eliot Spitzer 3, Manhattan 3, Mark Jacobson 2, Mitt Romney 2, Forsythe 2, Erroll 2, United States 2, Allstate 2, Brooklyn 2,
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  Current    Viewpoint With Eliot Spitzer    News/Business.   
   (2012) New. (CC) (Stereo)  

    November 12, 2012
    5:00 - 6:00pm PST  

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i have been waiting my whole life for that. we'll see you tomorrow. [ ♪ theme music ♪ ] >> eliot: good evening, i'm eliot spitzer, and this is "viewpoint." tell me how this ends. that's the question for four-star general david petraeus who was asked frequently when he commanded the 101st airborne. now he's the form director of the central intelligence agency he's going to be asked that same question again. petraeus submitted his resignation after it was reported that he had an extramarital affair that began two months after he became c.i.a. director in 2011 and ended four months ago. his affair with paula broad broadwell
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became public after an investigation into an alleged cyberharassment. the fbi tried to determine if the e-mails with petraeus' account to broadwell had-exchanged through regular e-mail exchanges or had been hawked. fbi agents believe there were no criminal charge to be brought or security implications to the case. this despite that broadwell had some classified information and seemed to be releasing information on the benghazi attack. >> i don't know if a lot of you had heard this, but the c.i.a. had taken a couple of libyan militia members prisoner and they think the attack on the on the
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the consulate was to get these prisoners back. >> peter king who heads the homeland security committee told nbc he had doubts that the probe ever should have happened. >> i don't know how this rises to the level of an fbi investigation. >> and senator dianne feinstein told nbc she wanted to know why the intelligence committee that she chairs weren't alerted about the ongoing investigations while some were. >> an fbi agent took it upon him to go to members of the house and tell them, and this was outside of the general line of the information. that's deeply dispushing. >> eliot: an fbi told representative dave reichert,
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and representative eric cantor told "the new york times," i was contacted by an fbi employee concerned is that sensitive classified information may have been compromised and made certain that they were aware of the allegations around potential risk to our national security. for more on the legal side, i'm joined by charles swift who currently works as a defense attorney in seattle. thank you for joining us. >> thank you for having me. thank you. >> eliot: my question is once the fbi determined there was no crime, no prosecution and no security breach that they were worried about why didn't the entire incident end at that point? >> it should have. it actually should never have started. it does not--this is one of those rare times where i find myself in agreement with representative king.
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there isn't a basis for criminal investigation to begin with. cyber-stalking is not about harassing. to be guilty of cyber-stalking you have to make a threat to a person or threaten to kidnap them. nothing that the fbi has released oh or said suggests that they had a basis for the crime to begin with. yet the investigation went on and then it was leaked. that resulted in the loss of an awfully good man. >> eliot: if general petraeus had still been in the military. i'm by no means an expert by this, you are the extramarital affair itself might have been in violation of the military code and hence would have led to some internal proceeding, am i correct about that? what would have happened had he still been in the military. >> article 134 criminalized adultery under certain circumstances. there would have been an
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investigation it determine if these circumstances were met at this particular case. adultery would be a gateway to determine if a crime had occurred. but by all accounts he had left the military there is no crime here. there simply wasn't a crime. it doesn't appear that ms. broad ms. broadwell committed a crime or general petraeus committed a crime but we spent an extraordinary amount of time to investigate it, leaked it and then destroyed him. >> eliot: he had left the military so that jurisdiction had evaporated. are there c.i.a. rules that pertain only to the c.i.a. that might have said when you're an employee of the c.i.a. certainly behavior any behavior that would make you vulnerable to blackmail or create the appearance--you know how that language can be written very broadly could create an internal c.i.a.
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investigation. >> there are rules with regards to your security clearance. what comes down on that area, any area that makes one susceptible to blackmail or other areas can result in the down grading of a security clearance. but that's not a matter for the fbi. if the fbi is aware of that that's a matter for the c.i.a. even general petraeus has to go through a security investigation and security officers helps determine clearance. so if there is a concern based on what we've learned, then that would be a question to refer internally to the c.i.a. to determine if there was a risk on security clearance. but it would not be a criminal investigation. >> eliot: commander, look, i think i have intuitive sense of what these rules look like having been an prosecutor in other venues. the answers you give me lead me to the conclusion that really should have happened here is that the fbi should have referred this to internal c.i.a. procedures.
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internal c.i.a. inspector general, but i have a hard time seeing why as you laid out the law the fbi would have had any obligation to inform members of congress or to ring alarm bells in any other way. >> they actually had no obligation. and in fact, the so-called whistleblower is not a whistleblower in my opinion. the so-called whistleblower leaked information that is protected. the fbi investigates a lot of potential wrongdoing. not all of it is wrongdoing yet it can do a tremendous amount of damage. we trust them with a title three warranting to through your personal papers, that they're not going to simply put them on the front page of the "new york times" when it's over well. the crime committed here when contrary to standing memory memory
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meerandom the crime committed was committed by an fbi agent not by general petraeus or ms. broad ms. broadwell. >> eliot: charles swift, thank you for your answers. you stated precisely what i have come to believe about this as well. the crime here was by the fbi that leaked in improperly to congress. that's where the investigation should go. maybe it will. for more on the political side of the president scandal. i'm joined by michael t oh omasky. welcome as well. >> nice to be with you yes. >> eliot: could he the president have refused the resignation of general petraeus and gone through the logic that we just followed that seems reasonable about what did and didn't happen that was wrong. >> i think he could have, yes. but you and i weren't in the room when they had that conversation. from the things i've read and
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the things i've heard it seems to me that petraeus was very pained by this situation, by the fact that this had become public and was becoming public. it looks to me that petraeus insisted on stepping down. that he felt that he had committed a breach, and that he had crossed a line, and that he really wanted the president to accept his resignation. >> eliot: well, to state the obvious, i can understand his sentiments and his feelings, but i still wonder if the president cannot have looked him in the eye and said as commander in chief we've analyzed this, i'm asking to you stay on. you'll tone for your sins, but you will serve your nation. >> um, he certainly could have, but he obviously didn't, and i think that what i speculated, i admit it is speculation but i think what i speculated is probably the reason why he didn't. it's a real--
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>> eliot: indeed. you hear a lot in washington, senators saying we should have been told more. what should congress have been told? it's sort of a murky area where it's not clear what if any crime was committed other than the potential breach by the fbi. what should congress be told in instances like this, do you think? >> i don't think it's clear that congress should have been told anything. look, they are senators and members of congress. they are important people. they're miffed. it's understandable that they're miffed but exactly why i can't say. i agree with what the lieutenant commander said 100%. the reporting of this issue over the next few days should really turn to the fbi agent because that's where the story is. >> i could not agree more and i'm trying not to be too judgmental for a host of reasons, but when i read the litany of sequence i'm intrigued about this rogue agent that's the only way to describe him
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her, i don't know the gender, but alerts two members of congress to the fact of an ongoing investigation. now the members of congress acted properly. canter called the fbi director. eric cantor did exactly what he should have done once he knew about it. but what is an fbi agent going out of protocol to alert political people. >> and political people from only one part and not both parties. and of course it was apparently halloween, so seven days before a presidential election. it's hard to escape the conclusion until we hear otherwise that this agent wanted this revelation to get out there, and to have some impact on the presidential campaign. that seems the reasonable surmise. >> eliot: is certainly is an an inference that many will draw, and i am one of them.
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and the highly improper breach of fbi reaching out beyond the agency to political people. it's hard not to reach that conclusion. what role does the whole controversy swirl around bengahzi of all things have in all this. i did a radio show and a well spoken republican said this was about petraeus keeping quiet about bengahzi. that'scracy. is there traction to this notion? >> there is traction of this notion among those people who were certain that mitt romney was going to win. >> eliot: if you talk about the conspiracies that justify their alternate universe, you're correct, that is unfortunately true. does this lead to any reassess reassessment of how the fbi fbi-c.i.a. interact and who should be told about things that
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are not security related? >> it should three to that. we ought to have an investigation of how this got out, how this became public in the first place. as the lieutenant commander said, there were no underlying crimes. as you said, no underlying crimes by either of the parties. very bad judgment but no underlying crimes. and there is no reason why we should know about this in the first place and petraeus shouldn't still be in his position. >> eliot: there is going to be an investigation into the investigation and the investigation of the media that didn't know and why they didn't know. only in washington. can't government do something right. >> we do. you're going to be talking about it with bob reich, and i'm sure he'll set us straight. >> eliot: he will set us street. michael tomasky assails as always, it's great to have you here on the program. >> thanks. >> eliot: finally did we change the republicans attitude.
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>> eliot: we mark veteran's day with good news and bad news. the good news is our number of the day 15,000. the number of homeless veterans in mesh has dropped by that number since 2009 according to secretary of a veteran's affairs eric shinseki.
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back in 2009 secretary shinseki promised to end homelessness among veterans by 2015. a laudable goal but the solutions are not cheap. it involves tackling some of the most vexing problems in the population at large. including mental illness drug and alcohol addiction and unemployment and poverty. but a 20% reduction in the number of homeless vets shows that the solutions are possible, and decentcy requires as we continue. it is our duty and our privilege to take care of them. online forum with a direct line to eliot spitzer. >>join the debate now. >> eliot: last tuesday democrats retained the white house, gained two seats in the senate, and shrank the republican majority in the house. and an exit poll after exit poll
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showed that voters were in favor of increasing taxes on the rich in order to control the deficit. a fact that some on the right seemed to have recognized as negotiations over the upcoming fiscal cliff begin. >> let's have a serious debate. don't cream and yell, when we one says it won't kill the country if we raise taxes a little bit on millionaires. >> the persistently grover norquist has not changed his tunes. >> the democrats would like to see tax increases on the american people. we just had an election and the house of representatives was elected committed to keeping taxes low. the president was committed elected on the basis that he was not romney, and that romney was a poopy head, and you should vote against romney, and he won by two points. but he didn't make the case that we should have higher taxes and higher spending. it sounded like the opposite. >> i'm not sure what grover
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norquist meant by that, but then again i rarely under him in the first place. joining me now former secretary under president clinton now a professor at uc berkeley robert reich whose best selling e-book "beyond outrage:what has gone wrong with our economy and our democracy and how to fix it" is now available on paper work. good evening. >> good evening. >> eliot: i want to pars where the republicans are. has the republican relationship willing to increase marginal tax rates. >> no, they have not said that they're willing to increase marginal tax rates at all. they said they're willing to increase revenues which is different from increasing rates. you can increase revenues by closing a few loopholes, putting a limit on certain deductions but they have not come around in any way something that equals
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grover norquist and the pledge. >> eliot: i don't want to jump on the media for mischaracterizing but the media wants to see a conversion of interest or views between the president and john boehner. i'm not sure that i see it yet. the president said you have to go to the clinton area, 36% top marginal rate. and you said a few loopholes that's fine but not the real battle we should be undertaking. am i correct? >> now boehner we're back to% where we were before the election in some respects. there is a significant core of the republican party that simply will not raise taxes under any sixths. they will not raise rates. they still feel that they are pledged to grover norquist, maybe not to the american people. not to the constitution, but to grover norquist. therefore they're not going to go along--even if boehner wants them to go along. both sides the president and
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democrats on one side, boehner and the republicans are basically maneuvering for bargaining position for what is going to be a long-term negotiation. >> eliot: they're just shadow boxing, i think that's exactly right. i wonder and i'm trying to assess--i have no knowledge of what goes on inside the republican party but i'm trying to discern if boehner has more strength now than he did when this negotiation took place lose yearlastyear. does he have the political strength because his party lost, can he look eric cantor in the eye and other republican leaders in the eye and say we have no choice but to cut a deal that is now on the president's terms? >> i think the strongest bargaining level he has is not so much that the republicans lost the election but beginning january 1st tax rates do go up particularly on the wealthy automatically. that's when the bush tax cut is basically terminated.
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the president has that bargaining power. essentially in washington doing nothing is the output, is the kind of logical end of not degreing on anything. if nothing is done tax rates go up primarily on the wealthy and that's not something that the republicans want to see. john boehner is signaling what he wants is to get an agreement that all the spending and all of the bush tax cuts will simply continue on after january 1st. >> eliot: i hate to sound like a broken record, but i completely agree with you. the president gains strength by waiting. i've written this. you've written this. the bush tax cuts expire of their own accord and the president is sitting there with a tax increase on the middle class but then he turns to the republicans and says lower tax taxes, and how can they vote against that.
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there were twin scourges that were predictedded by the deficit hawks. one, we would have rampant inflation if we had continued deficit spending, and the other that interest rates would necessarily skyrocket. neither has happened. >> quite the opposite. the yield on a ten-year treasury is below 2%. the dollar is basically a safe harbor for global sabers the united states and elsewhere because a lot of other places around the world are much more uncertain than the united states. so it is possible for the treasury to borrow at rock-bottom rates right now. there is no inflation in sight as far as the eye can see. and so this whole notion you got to get on with deficit reduction immediately because the economy depends on it is absolutely wrong. the first priority needs to be job growth, growth of the economy over all. we've got to get a recovery that is even stronger than we have now before we turn to serious
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deficit reduction. >> eliot: every now and again when i engage with a republican, let's take philosophy out of this and let's see how it works. you predicted inflated interest rates and the three big arguments that they make, it has been disproven conclusively as well. what is their economic argument. is there one that has not been thoroughly debunked. >> i don't think they have an economic argument. i have not heard an economic argument. they say if you increase taxes on people who are wealthy you're going to slow economic growth but other reports suggest that is not the case. there is no correlation at all between increasing tax rates at the top and economic growth. to the contrary there seems to be a correlation between actually increasing rates on the
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top and increasing economic growth. bill clinton increased taxes and we had a much better economy than we had after george w. bush who cut taxes in 2001 and 2003. >> eliot: i'm going to talk about that event study in a few moments on the show. lastly there is another crisis emerging, which is the debt cereal something going to bump up us or we'll bump up against it in a short month or two. that has to be with this bargaining--they have to deal with it simultaneously i hope. >> boehner will say to the president, look, if you keep everything the way it is right now and extend the bush tax cuts temporarily into january or february then we will agree not to oppose an increase in the debt limit and then we'll have our negotiations sometime in february or in march. i think the president needs to say no. the american public already went through that with you guys. one of the reasons you got a rubbing in the last election is
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because of your manipulations your subjecting to the american economy to the possibility of defaulting on the faith and credit of the united states. americans don't want that again. we are not going to allow that, and i am going to maintain the bargaining leverage i have. we're going to end the bush tax cuts on january 1st as scheduled, period. >> eliot: secretary, i hope the president says that precisely to john boehner. we will all be proud of him if he does. former labor secretary now professor at uc berkeley and author of the book "beyond outrage" robert reich. thanks for joining us.
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>> eliot: still to come, two weeks after sandy but where does the recovery stand? but first, president obama gloats mitt romney mopes and the simpsons take a shot at karl rove. when it doesn't fit anywhere else, we put it in the viewfinder. >> first i want to thank mitt
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romney. governor, i admire your tenacity. you got 48% of the vote. even though watching you run for president was like watching someone with roller skates trying to climb stairs. >> oh, darn it. darn it all to heck. >> the good news is that obama won. the bad news, only 39% of whites voted for him. that's the pattern. white people vote for white people like it's going out of style. and like most things that white people do, it's going out of style. >> what's next for you father? >> oh, i don't know. there is so much i want to see and do. i'd like to learn how mayonnaise is made. [ the simpsons ♪ >> hello, mitt. >> hello, karl rove.
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>> i still think you can win ohio. look, now might not be the best time but could i borrow $300 million? >> what were you doing? >> i went to l.a. >> working woman next to al roker who is a man in the world. >> do you see anything in porn that attracts you at all. >> no, pat. these questions that you ask me, i'm going it really-- >> can you do me a favor before we let you go, and can you perform for us a call. >> yeah, i can do one. >> yeah. >> just-- >> just go right after it. [ >> thank you so much. >> i still love you america. i do. but you've heard my feelings very, very much. >> i want to assure the american people that i learned a lot in
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my first term. mainly that this is a terrible job, and i hate it. >> eliot: it's not that terrible. hurricane sandy's clean up continues, and the costs mount. that's next.
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are you in good hands? ♪ ♪ you know who is coming on to me now? you know the kind of guys that do reverse mortgage commercials? those types are coming on to me all the time now. (vo) she gets the comedians laughing and the thinkers thinking. >>ok, so there's wiggle room in the ten commandments, that's what you're saying. you would rather deal with ahmadinejad than me. >>absolutely. >> and so would mitt romney. (vo) she's joy behar. >>and the best part is that current will let me say anything. what the hell were they thinking? >> eliot: it has been two weeks since sandy and now we have karina-like ravages here in new york. basic necessities still have not been met. governor cuomo acknowledged as much today.
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>> 98% 99% of the people who can have their power back do. if you don't have your power back, it probably means power can't be restored to your home at this time. >> eliot: at least 58,000 people in the rockaways, long island and brooklyn may be without power for months. the costs costs are continue to go add up, more than 69,000 people have registered for fema assistance. while cuomo plans to petition congress for $30 billion if for appropriations to rebuild referring to the money as a wise investment. sandy has cost more than $50 billion. the government unable to respond to crisis is another cost that has no measure. joining me now for more on the recovery effort, errol louis host of ny 1's inside city hall and mark jacobson, contributing editor of the new york magazine. thank you both for your time tonight. tell me how the two compare
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visually? >> let's see, first of all it's cold in rockaway. the best thing about katrina it happens in new orleans during the summer is it wasn't cold. but the devastation along the coast line is similar. just without the flooding. the water just stayed there. in katrina the traditional hugertraditionalhurricane damage was not the problem. it was that the floodwaters stayed. >> eliot: the lack of fundamental energies, heat food, the devastation the public is getting equally upset in terms of the frustration levels. >> i don't think the people people--rockaway is the
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peninsula which is have very interesting point because it starts at breezy point, and then it goes down to the far rock rockaway. so you've got this racial ethnic kind of kaleidoscope there. but then you have everybody in the same boat because anybody has any power or water. no hot water. and it's just--it mounts up. it's like a geometric progression. if you don't have heat and hot water for four days. that's in the so bad. but every day that you go through it, and now it's almost been three weeks it becomes more and more horrific. >> eliot: erroll, the anxiety level is growing and it grows day by day. how is the environment changing because of all of this. >> the more far-sighted politicians see this coming. the mayor was out not that long ago, and it was not an announceed
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doctor it was not a schedule. he was just touring some of the areas. we just happened to have a camera there and we caught him being cussed out by a middle aged white guy, a middle aged black woman they looked like they were from different opportunities. and they all came together to cuss him out. this is what people can't quite get to, unlike 9/11 where everybody knew, everybody understood it, whole communities have been wiped out. chose kinds of numbers that you're talking about people, all of their neighbors where they shop, all gone. and the city seems to be functioning, the other part of the city, the celebrities in manhattan. they're still throwing their costume balls and hanging out at the clubs. the politicians sense that there is going to be an ugly response. >> eliot: not to relive the marathon decision, but for everybody who wanted life to go
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on we're resilient we continue and we won't let this deswayed us. but when you see homes washed away. i have friends in the breezy point, it's devastating in what you hear. >> you can stand in rockaway and see manhattan twinkleing like the emerald city. and what you're talking about begins to mount up. >> eliot: and erroll, this plays to persistence in the outer boroughs. we, if you live in brooklyn or queens we're the forgotten boroughs. those in manhattan get their services back but we're left to fend for ourselves. >> that sense of grievance pre-dates the storm. staten island where half of the casualties were centered, it used to be the site for the
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largest municipal dump in the whole world. they've never forgotten that what this city has done to them year after year and many neighborhoods have similar feelings. >> eliot: when you have--what changes have to be made. logic would dictate that you don't rebuild precisely where you were or it's going to happen again. >> well, it depends on how you feel about things like vast ideas like climate change and things like that. in the subway system and erroll will know if i'm wrong about this, but i think it has flooded six or seven times the entire time it's been in existence. and half of them have been in the last ten years. therefore you can expect this kind of stuff to keep happening it's been happening and now people have this panic idea that every time it's going to rain this water will come in and what are you going to do? are you going to build the sea
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walls and how many billions of dollars will that cost. >> eliot: when you look at the infrastructure and climate change is at the root of this conceptually. >> something to think about. >> eliot: we have to think about how we deal with our infrastructure in a different way. >> let's go to the world trade center site. you were there. your office was there. you know what it looked like. the infrastructure in the end was not the building. the building is coming up. it's a social infrastructure. you walk through tribeca and its baby central, strollers soccer leagues the whole thing. within a block of where all of this happened. people thought that never ever would happen. it's happened and it's been ten years. >> it's been ten years. >> eliot: and politically in terms of a city not so long. way back then i would say put more residential properties doesn't here would help the revitalization faster. erroll the politics of the mayor's race for next year, does it effect it?
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does mike bloomberg seem a little less appealing in terms of outer borough votes. >> we've already seen it. with christine quinn at his side and two potential rivals who will try to become the mayor they announced $5 million to rebuild schools and hospitals. the third candidate bill thompson said he didn't like it. he felt it was inadequate, he's siding himself with those who are beginning to complain. >> eliot: i'm spoiling because billy thompson who can promise more without needing to provide it. billy is a friend--they're all friends, but easier to promise in that context. >> i think people need to understand what it's like to be without heat and hot water for three weeks. it is devastating. and well, the storm is moving on, we'll move on to something else just think what it might
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be like to be living out there. >> eliot: it's destroyed lives families and cataclysmic. errol louis inside city hole and mark jacobson, contributor editor of new york magazine. thank you for joining us. how did the republicans lose and why didn't they see it coming? comedian with us ahead.
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>> eliot: tax hikes on the highest incomes do not kill jobs. the evidence is in, but some people don't want to hear it. that's next on my view. with "viewpoint with eliot spitzer." >>questions, of course, need to be answered. >>we will not settle for the easy answers. >> eliot: if last week was all about politics, and thankfully things turned oh out pretty well, maybe this week we can put ideology and partisanship aside for a moment and apply a more
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objective scientific approach oh some of the tough issues we face. what do historical records and data suggest might be the better course for our nation to follow? specifically cha is the impact of increasing the top marginal tax rate on the rate of investment and job creation? if numbers could persuade me that raising that rate injured job creation, i would reconsider my belief that wealthy should pay more. but on the other hand, if the record established that raising the popular ginnal rate did not in any way injure investment, then those who have been answer alterably opposed should be forced to reconsider their views as well. we have research to answer tough policy questions. the reports are put through a process of rigorous analysis before they're released.
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the foment line of the crs report is this. i quote the reduction of the top tax rates appears to be uncore rated with saving, investment, and productivity growth. the top tax rates appear to have little or no relation to the size of the economic pie. however, the top tax rate reductions appear to be associated with the increasing concentration of income at the top of the income distribution. the report presents the sort of analysis many of us have been discussing for years though done much more rigorously. tax rates were at the highest when growth was at it it's peak, and reduction in rates has not a hinn discernible impact on the types of investment that lead to growth. rather than acknowledge the findings, the republican efforts have been directed at having the report withdrawn. it is a fascinating story within its own right reminiscent of a different era when news of something that it didn't like was simply suppressed. but leave that for another day.
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the important point here is the scientific conclusion reached by the study. raising the top tax rate to 39.6% will not have any of the damage consequences that the groverer norquists of the world suggest. a week after the political and ideological battle to support slightly higher taxes on the wealth which was won and in this case favorness witness. that's my view. (vo) she gets the comedians laughing and the thinkers thinking. >>ok, so there's wiggle room in the ten commandments, that's what you're saying. (vo) she's joy behar. >>current will let me say anything.
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where you don't back down from a challenge. this is the age of knowing how
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to make things happen. so, why let erectile dysfunction get in your way? talk to your doctor about viagra. 20 million men already have. ask your doctor if your heart is healthy enough for sex. do not take viagra if you take nitrates for chest pain; it may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure. side effects include headache, flushing upset stomach, and abnormal vision. to avoid long-term injury, seek immediate medical help for an erection lasting more than four hours. stop taking viagra and call your doctor right away if you experience a sudden decrease or loss in vision or hearing. this is the age of taking action. viagra. talk to your doctor. >> eliot: they should have seen it coming. the writing was on the wall. it was as simple as checking nate silver's blog which had already proven in both 2008 and 2010 to be pretty spot-on in
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forecasting election results. yet on election night the most prominent political pundits pundits and pollsters the right had to offer and even the candidate himself from shocked. shocked that they were losing. and losing badly. author of "how to be black" how in paper black--i'm stealing his line. and the founder of the humor website "cultivated wit." are they that oblivious to reality? >> this is a consequence of hall within a hall, so to speak. they've been denying reality science with the climate, and how a body's work. this is the consequences. you can only reject the
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president so far. >> eliot: i'm glad you went beyond the mere election. the larger story is this this is a window in their minds. they can get away with reality until they're hit over the head. >> in in the long run it can catch up to you. what i find super frightening is this is not limited to the election. this is the right wing noise machine failing to deliver information than propaganda. >> eliot: we saw this on full force when karl rove was arguing with fox tv about the numbers in ohio. >> that was a poetically justice momentjustmoment. >> eliot: you can go back where me refuse to acknowledge that
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the earth was not the middle of the universe. >> it's not like a monster where you close your eyes long enough the monster is gone. the facts are there. >> eliot: but what is--here's the problem maybe we face. within an election there are numbers that are counted. even karl rove had to stare down reality at time. what happens with climate change where we have these storms and evidence, but they continue to deny it. what is that one moment that where there is an eureka moment where they can't deny it. >> unfortunately, given by the precedence set by this election it will be far to late for most of us. there will be rising sea levels 50 feet above normal. >> eliot: and then it will be too late for us to do what is% possible to save our civilization. >> that's the danger. even if you look within the romney campaign. ignore the pundits. they get paid to say outlandish
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things. talk radio ignore all of that. within their data they denied that there would be young people voting black people voting, they chose to go on a path that was friendly to them rather than working harder. >> eliot: perhaps they understand reality, but in the course of the campaign you don't want to tell the public that you're losing. when karl rove and apparently governor romney were still denying it no, this was not just something--they believed it. >> they ordered fireworks. they were really that shocked. that's not good. that's not good. it's not healthy, it's a traumatic experience to wake up and be show shocked by the state of your country that you're despondent about it. but then to inform the public to make democracy works. >> eliot: we know fox, give them credit, they said to karl rove.
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that number is bigger than that number. when you think about the negotiations going on between the president and the leaders of the house it makes it very hard to get to sensible results. >> they're coming from an outlandish perspective and if you're not basing your decision on the same raw set of data and information it's hard to find common ground. >> eliot: we have to pivot. you have this great book out. as you said, paperback. are we in a post racial moment? >> oh, that's ridiculous. >> eliot: you gave me the answer. give me the answer. >> it's a quaint notion i think we're generally beyond that language. if you look at birtherrism, and the idea that the president is a muslim and the scapegoating of immigrants we're not post racial, and muslim-americans, we're not there.
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we are on a long and hard path to reducing racial outcomes in this country. >> eliot: we should acknowledge that we have made progress. if you look at the role that voters made, soon the white voters will have to claim affirmative action. >> i'm not a racial dooms doomsday nay sayer. we have made a ton of progress, but we have a long road ahead of us. >> eliot: you're using comedy it make your point. >> absolutely. race is such a touchy subject people get defensive, offended very quickly. humor can help lower the temperature on both sides. >> eliot: "how to be
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